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I feel like there are things for me to find both south and west, but as others are already going to the river I feel that my own dreams direct me to cover the other direction with more urgency, if it fits with your plans.

Mischief-making shaman of Da , a lover of the night but amiable and gregarious. Bolen is an emerging Hulun personality.

DescriptionEdit

Bolen is 5'10" tall and slender, with a narrow face. His skin is remarkably pale for a steppe tribesman, due to his preference for the night over the day, and contrasts sharply with his jet-black hair. His pale blue eyes strike some as scheming and untrustworthy, but upon closer inspection sparkle with mischief. He appears to move awkwardly, in a slightly gangly fashion, and so appears clumsy, but if you watched him for a bit longer you would notice that although he often stumbles, he never falls; in fact, for all his lack of grace, he can run as fast as the tribe's best scouts and never gets lost.

Bolen has always been a troublesome character. Never serious about any subject, the boy is a constant source of flippancy and cheek. He very rarely shows any respect for his elders, with the exception of Daromir, whose stern features do not lend themselves to being teased, and K'harg , who Bolen simply doesn't dare to mock too openly. However, for all his misbehaviour, it is always completely obvious that there is no malice at all behind his mischief; simply the exuberance of a young man coming into his own, and so he is well-liked, especially by Fanwé and Moraath, who have taught him his magic and who secretly enjoy being exasperated with him even as they scold him yet again. He hold what he thinks is a secret infatuation with the scout Ezra, although it is obvious to anyone who notices that he goes out of his way to tease her far more than anyone else; he is slightly awed by her confidence and aloof nature, and the matter-of-fact competence she displays in every activity. Unfortunately, his attempts to not be seen showing too much respect and deference to her have precisely the opposite effect to what he intends.

Bolen is seventeen years old.

BackgroundEdit

From birth, Bolen has always preferred the night - under the pale light of the moon, his senses seem to flex and unfurl to their fullest extent, and the cool darkness sends shivers of anticipation over his bare skin. His parents, and the other tribesmen and -women, were always perplexed by this, being creatures of the Sun herding their cattle by day; however, recognising his talent for magic, they supported him in his eccentricity as best they could, doing their best to tolerate the cockiness caused by his talent and the knowledge that he was genuinely different to the others, and trying to channel and refine his natural profligacy into a wiser cleric of the tribe; for while he always learned and understood very quickly, he nonetheless still acted rashly and without forethought. Gradually, though, they are shaping him into a fine young man and helping him to find the best use for his unusual talents.

Role in the Story so FarEdit

After assisting Moraath with preparations for the feast , Bolen encouraged Wyk to join him in a bit of eavesdropping at K'harg tent. They were followed by Amond and- after not really hearing anything other than a fleeting mention of Ezra- the three were scolded by Daromir and return to the feast.

Following K'harg's speech Bolen briefly equivocated before deciding that he should join K'harg's raiding party in the hope of impressing Ezra... or maybe even saving her from whatever fate has befallen her. Like many of the youngsters his petition was rejected and Bolen was assigned guard duty with Lugana and Ret .

Whilst at the south-east entrance it was Bolen who spotted something lurking in the long grass, and he warned the others that it was a panther. The animal was startled as Ret closed in and charged though it was caught in a trap the warrior had made. A flurry of blows rained down on the beast but it was probably Bolen's shortspear that proved decisive. As the scout Eyg inspected the animal he revealed that it was the companion of the old druid Lomnu, seen but moments ago at the camp with Moraath, who had notbeen seen since. Leela pointed out that a tent was on fire and Bolen rushed after Lugana, who dashed to the tent believing Marek to be in danger.

Bolen magically summoned some water to help put out the flames but Lugana rushed into the tent. Bolen was more cautious, receiving a blast of steam and smoke when he attempted to peer in. An unnamed elder dragged them from the blaze, which was swiftly extinguished by the tribe, leading to much discussion about Marek's possible involvement in the inferno.

During Marek's 'trial' Bolen is the most philosophical, conjecturing that an enemyinfiltrator was the most likelyculprit but that it was also a strange coincidence that Marek had angrily fled the camp. He fetched his armour and went on patrol.

The remainder of the night passed uneventfully until Bolen slept, when he experienced the most unusual dream...

"I don't know about Forl, but the west seems to be something of a theme," began the shaman hesitantly. "I found myself atop a silver horse unlike any other; it outshone even the face of Da, which hung in the sky bigger than I've ever seen it. I saw an owl perched level with me, on Wernak's Ascension, and then the hunt of the night was upon me. Hundreds of women on hundreds of animals, all pale as the moon and dark as the night; and I thought they were hunting me." The young man paused, partly for effect and partly because he didn't quite know how to continue.

"I fled them to the west, following the owl as it leapt from its perch, but it turned south while I carried on riding in terror, straight for the face of Da; the host followed the owl, not me, heading to the river, and the mountains. Still I kept riding, and all the animals of the night came racing alongside me in a host of my own; wolves, jaguars, foxes, even moths!

Eventually my horse, brilliant though it is, tired, and I stopped. Ahead of me was a fire surrounded by five cairns. As I approached it the moon shattered, coating the land in silver that faded away instantly so that the fire was the only light. As I got nearer, I saw that it was a funeral pyre with..." He paused again, flushing slightly, "...a girl on it, in full armour. Suddenly, a wind appeared, and brought with it a chant in a language I couldn't quite understand, as though the words were twisting away from me even as I knew them, and they said this: 'Oinez hilik gaude! Orain Saléna gaua arauak!' Suddenly, the girl was stood before me but was on the pyre too; the one standing was pale-skinned with hair like midnight, and only seemed half alive. A snake coiled around her arm and a raven peered at me from her shoulder.

I turned and saw that the hunt of the night was with me again, but wrong, twisted like the girl before me; I was surrounded by them, and the snake coiled up her arm and around her chest. Blood dripped from her eyes, and the raven spoke to me in the language of the Dragon while she laughed.

Three times, it spoke: 'The dead will rise.'"

Suddenly chilled to the bone, Bolen forced a grin and joked.

"But no, nothing about Forl. Just west, and a terrible night's sleep."

Bolen agreed to join Anna's hunting party, following Bundu's foraging expedition for several miles before heading west. In secret consultation with Lugana, Grimach and Grolik the party agreed that they would ultimately head further west to investigate the source of their troubled sleep and Lugana's suspicions about the village of Forl...

Beyond the Fourth Wall...Edit

Bolen is a PC in the Warriors of the Plains campaign managed by LeprousLeprechaun. The description and background above were lifted from his original game application and all italicised text is taken from his in-character posts.

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